Tuesday, July 29, 2014


Harlem has many streams and rivers that used once run through the uptown neighborhood and an empty lot by 141st Street provides a rare glimpse of one of those waterways.  When we looked at an open house on this block on the north side of St. Nicholas Park several years ago, we were told that the lowest sub-floor of the brownstone was a "wet basement"  which meant it alway had about an inch of water  within.   We were told that this occurred because a stream once existed in the neighborhood and had since been covered up over a century ago.   One of the brownstones on the block apparently did not make it to this current century intact and a keen observer can see a shallow flow of water on that lot which is covered in reeds during the warm weather season.  The lower photo was taken in springtime and now the parcel of land has much taller foliage growing within.


  1. Do you guys know where all the waterways were? Were there any waterways under West 150th Street between Convent and Amsterdam? It would be helpful to know if there are any waterways under my house so I can be sure to take precautions for the future. I wouldn't want my insurance company to find out though!

  2. sump pump. Problem solved.